Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Kim Novak turns 80

Kim Novak being held by James Stewart in Vertigo

Today marks the 80th birthday of actress Kim Novak, who is probably best remembered for playing the blonde who drives James Stewart nuts in Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo. I've stated in the past that Vertigo isn't one of my favorites, in part because I don't care for the Stewart character; in part because I really don't care about Novak's character; and lastly, because Hitchcock pretty much bludgeons the viewer with the idea that Stewart's character is obsessed with Novak's character. We get the point, Alfred!

A more fun movie with Novak might be Pushover. Sure, it's stuff that's been done before, but it's entertaining stuff.

I briefly mentioned The Legend of Lylah Clare back when Ernest Borgnine died, since he's got a small role in the movie. Novak plays Clare, a 1930s actress who died tragically, as well as a latter-day (at least, late 1960s) actress who can't act but looks amazingly like Clare, enough that the director who wants to make a movie about Clare (Peter Finch). It's terrible, but it's a fun terrible, for the most part.

Apparently, I've never done a full-length post about another of her films with James Stewart, Bell, Book and Candle, in which she plays a witch who falls for Stewart when she casts a spell for him to fall in love with her, as she's trying to spite her fellow witches and warlocks. I personally don't find it to the greatest, but it's another one that's reasonably entertaining.

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